Mercedes, city of 42,359 (2005) inhabitants in Uruguay located at the junction of the Río Negro and the Uruguay River and capital of the department of Soriano. Mercedes was founded in 1781, along with other settlements, to discourage Brazilian incursions into the country. Ruling over a vast agrarian hinterland dedicated to grain growing and the raising of livestock, Mercedes competes with Fray Bentos on the Uruguay River as the major agricultural center of western Uruguay, also known as Littoral.
See alsoUruguay, Geography .
Elzear Giuffra, La república del Uruguay (Montevideo, 1935).
Piccone, Aurelio, Ernesto Daragnès Rodero, Juan Antonio Varese, and Manuel Santos Pírez. Memorias del río Negro. Montevideo: Torre del Vigía-Ediciones, 2003.
CÉsar N. Caviedes